Sunday, June 22, 2014

The Second Longest Day of the Year

We've reached the first "official" day of summer, but the heat has been well under way since the start of June. These are the kiddie pool, and water fight days of summer. Necessary in order to survive the coming dog days, that my father in law so eloquently outlines in his poem. I'll post it for you when the dog days arrive July 3rd. 
My test plots haven't yeilded abountiful  harvest, but they have produced. So far I've had a few tasty strawberries, some delicious green beans, and Cherokee wax beans that my daughter quickly scarfs down. This is the whole point you see. To grow the foods we love, free of GMO, and pesticide activities. 
The first plot to spring forth was the herb garden. It's starting to get a little tired of its SW exposure. And the plants are showing signs of mineral deficiencies. So I added organic fertilizer, which smells like freeze dried cat poop. I'll just have to see if that helps. 
The next plot to show signs of life is the, "Pump house/Outhouse" plot. I originally was only going to plant wildflowers around it. But my love for edibles snuck in, and soon there was a variety of corn, squash, watermelon, and mustards in place. It does give the pump house a victory garden look. This plot had been looking really tired from the heat, so yesterday I let the sprinkler soak them for a while, and today they didn't even wilt in the sun. I need a soaker hose. I'm still learning.
The third plot is the SW corner plot in the yard. It's pretty close to a dying black walnut. So? You say. Well, apparently black walnuts produce a toxin called jugalone, that prevents other trees and certain vegetables like tomatoes from growing too close to it. It makes it's own Jugalos? Yes.
Lastly we have the 3 peach trees in place, 1 muscadine, and 1 Arapaho blackberry bush planted. As well as a few large bramble patches ripening, and a fig tree that I cleared around, pruned, and is setting figs. There is also 1 wild persimmon tree that is setting fruit too. As well as a few black cherry trees, but those cherries where too sour for me. The dewberries are ready, but most are in the neighboring property. The red mulberry tree gave me a nice little harvest that I froze and made jam with.
The nut trees are pecan, and bkack walnut. There are 7 pecans, and 3 black walnuts. All the pecans appear to be setting, but only 1 of the 3 black walnuts is holding onto it's, err, nuts, if you will. The other 2 are hollow, yet leafed, and started producing, but are now regularly dropping immature nuts all over the place. That's too bad. Black walnut trees are pretty valuable. So I'll have to focus on the young healthy one that is left. The ramains of a 4th black walnut lay near the barn in rotting sections. What a waste!

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